Passion is a funny word

Passion, what a funny word don’t you think? It can be positive or negative. A passion for the arts, a passion for women, a passion for the orphan, a passion for hiking, a passion for the widow, a passion for absolutely nothing… Imagine if the word passion was taken out of your life. Literally you never ever gave your full emotion, talent, love, fear, etc… to anything.

Strangely this seems easy to actually do, it doesn’t seem so drastic when applied to real life, suddenly bright colors become dull, dreams become desires become memories become forgotten.  This isn’t a sob story this is what happens to a lot of us, we suddenly lose some of ourselves to routine, schedule, frustration, confusion. We suddenly lose our urge to fight. We look at pictures of death, disease, genocide, wars and famine and suddenly say “oh well.” Nothing seems tangible only metaphorical and all is just simply too much to conquer or bear. We stop believing that one single action from us could actually change anything… Passion, what a funny word don’t you think?

No…No and… No

We receive a lot more No’s in life then Yeses (please excuse an spelling errors right there).

Job hunting is probably the most frustrating venture one will embark on. It literally will make you feel like a very small fish in a very large pond. E-mail after E-mail will contain….”thank you…BUT…..

It becomes discouraging and often hurts because it feels like rejection….I’m trying to take Ash’s advice and remember….”maybe the no will led you to better opportunities.”

I know that I didn’t get the really “plush” job in Lakeland because there was more opportunity in Nashville. I know I’m constantly rejected by church after church because either I am not ready or there is better opportunity out there (maybe a lil’ bit of both).

No can actually be a Yes in disguise….it could be the place holder for something much better.  Not only that but it makes the Yeses in life, just that much better. The best “Yes” I ever received is about to be my wife in less than a month. Thank God for the No’s I received from other girls when I asked for that relationship, or that date, because otherwise I would have missed out on the most amazing woman in the world.

Pondering God’s grace

Pete Wilson said something that just rocked my world yesterday. I’m sure I myself have said it before and have most definitely learned it at some point, but it never clicked with me like it did yesterday.

For people like me who spend a lot of time in their own head and think a lot….sometimes thoughts can stray and end up in places you never wanted your mind to travel too. I struggle with my thought life and for me there is this constant feeling of guilt and frustration that I allowed myself to go there in a thought. However, Pete mentioned that “not only does God know every thought you have had in the past, but he knows thoughts and words that have not even been conceived in your mind nor uttered off of your tongue.” WOW, God already knows the thoughts and words I will speak, the mistakes I will make, and he still loves me……playing off of a statement Pete said, “Your value and worth will never depreciate in God’s eyes.”

Secret sleeves

I was listeneing to the new One Republic single “secrets” and there is a line about wearing your “secrets on your sleeves,” and I had this thought; what if we all had tattooed sleeves, and our artwork consisted of all of our lives, our triumphs our tragedies, what would yours or mine look like?

I have a tattoo on my fore arm and I get asked about it daily, which I absolutely love. Immediately the question arises about, “what does it mean?”

I have this visual of a person looking at my arm and seeing a picture of a broken heart with stitches, they ask what is that one about…pain and love, how i was wounded and  beautiful woman (soon to be my wife) taught me how to really love.

Another sees a picture tears falling on broken bodies, they ask again, “what does that mean?” I explain my sympathy, my sorrow, my passion for broken people but also tears representing my lack of action.

How can we better convey our lives into visual artwork that is open and on our sleeves.

What if we were a lamp that lit an entire dark room, what if we were the salt that seasoned conversations, what if our stories, our actions, our passions were on our sleeves and we never had to start a conversation because the artwork was so interesting and compelling others asked about your beautiful artwork….

Impressions of “The girl with the dragon tattoo” pt. 1

Since I’ve been on some heavy topics this last week I wanted to take a refreshing break and discuss one of the books I am currently reading.  Thus far I have read up to chapter 9 of Steig Larsson’s The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, The story has been quite detailed, drawn out, and some what boring. I am sticking it out, because everyone says that once you get throughout the first few chapters, things start to pick up. One thing I do enjoy about the story is the timeline. I feel like I am actually a part of these character’s day to day lives, and it gives you the sense of being in a movie.

I hope the story picks up soon, but in the meantime (without any spoilers) what were your impressions, to those who have or are reading it?

Creativity Ninjas thrive in desolate environments

desolateadjective |ˈdesəlit|(of a place) deserted of people and in a state of bleak and dismal emptiness (my emphasis) : a desolate moor.

Working at — I’ve discovered that creativity is not only suppressed but for the most part discouraged. Sometimes when I’m given an assignment I will go that extra mile to give it a different look and feel. I’ll turn a book to the side or angle it to make it eye catching…instantly the manager or another employee comes by and turns it back or fixes it to be straight.  Other times there will be three books instead of piling them on top of each other, I place one over the other two to give an effect of full and eye appealing….again this gets fixed and the manager jokes they “don’t like all that here (my phrasing).”

What do you do when routine and “standard” hinder your creativity? I feel like (and I’m not alone) routine kills creativity.

Now there are good routines and habits, but I feel like even in a set work out routine for example, taking a different trail or doing different exercises is healthy. It actually keeps the muscles guessing and makes the body work harder, but more effectively.

So how do you implement creativity into the work place when you are clearly discouraged/instructed not to?

I’ve tried the Ninja approach where you simply do it when no one is around to instruct otherwise, I’ve also done it against their wishes, but I find this counter productive and disrespectful. Not only that but it makes double the work because I have to go back and fix it when they don’t like it.

After talking to Jackie I found two statements that answered this question for me.

Basically jackie said, (my paraphrasing) “you can’t go against what they want, because it’s disrespectful and  rebellion. You have to recognize that this environment isn’t right for you and find something else.”

So if you are in this situation, (my paraphrasing)  “you work to put food on the table so you are able to pursue your passion….You have to be willing to make room in your life for your passion.”

Answer to my orginal question “So how do you implement creativity into the work place when you are clearly discouraged/instructed not to?”—- You don’t …simply put, if you recognize it as the wrong environment, get out.

So maybe creativity ninjas don’t really thrive in desolate environments, but are smart enough to know when to abandon a mission in pursuit of something better….

My mid 20’s crisis

Warning: this post is honest

Tonight I was at crosspoint and Pete shared this message entitled “empty promises.”  There was this one train of thought that rocked my world. He discussed the idea that a lot of 22 and 23 year olds are feeling the pressure, depression, anxiety and frustrations that come along with a “mid-life” crisis. Yet they (I) am so young and there is no reason to be experiencing these pressures at our age. Pete said that the reason is because “our society has become so performance driven.”

I finally feel that I can put into words the thing that has been bothering me; I have made success and credit my idols. I have this huge desire to succeed and be known. As Pete pointed out; some idols are not necessarily bad things, “but left unchecked can become trouble in our life.” I always feel like I have to succeed and that time is ticking away, that life is passing me by. Some of it I get from seeing these young actors, singers, etc… on tv just soaring to these lavish titles and positions.

I want to be successful and I would like to be famous or well known, but are these desires of the flesh? I feel like my desire to succeed when put in the right context and for the purpose of the kingdom is a good thing, but to desire to be famous…not so much. Erwin McManus once asked, “do you want to be famous or do you want to be great?” What’s the line?  I see all these famous faces on tv and I want to roll with them and live like they do. This is my confession, I think I have lost track of what life is really about. I don’t know, I hope that by working through this with God through prayer I can discover the true meaning of GREAT.  I pray that through Pete’s series, this blog, prayer with God, prayer from friends/family, support from you all…I can discover how to get out of this crisis, how to balance success and allow God to work on my heart when it comes to fame.